Hit it Hard & Wish it Well ebook

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A Trumpet Masterclass in a Book

Hit It Hard And Wish It Well is a groundbreaking multitouch ebook that delves deep into the methodologies of iconic cornet soloist Herbert L. Clarke, as well as his ten-year protegé, Claude Gordon. Tailored as a comprehensive trumpet masterclass, this ebook incorporates videos and animations, offering an interactive learning experience unparalleled by traditional paper formats. It culminates in a chapter dedicated to integrating these principles into timeless method books, ensuring its value as a perpetual guide for trumpet lessons. For those eager to enhance their trumpet skills, this multimedia masterclass serves as an essential tool for more productive practice sessions.

Lee Loughnane of the band Chicago talks about this book:

Harry Kim about this trumpet method book:

Reading Jeff Purtle's book Hit Is Hard And Wish It Well brought back many of these memories that I can now look back on with a smile and a feeling of gratitude. I was a mess by the time I found my way to study with Claude Gordon. My lips were always damaged, I had a cut inside my bottom lip that never healed and the only way I could achieve any accuracy was to play really loudly. I couldn't remember what it felt like to be warmed up as I was always worn out. I was hungry for some real information and was lured by these words:

Systematic Approach To Daily Practice

  • How To Practice
  • What To Practice
  • When To Practice

And the claim that followed was especially enticing.

A fifty-two week trumpet course designed to develop a register from the second C below low C to C above high C along with the power, endurance sound and control necessary to me the demands required of the professional trumpet player.

SIGN ME UP, I'M IN!!!! This was exactly what I was so desperately searching for. What I wasn't expecting was to walk away with so much more than I had bargained for.

During the two years studying with Claude I learned not only how to practice but to practice with a purpose.

I learned about air, not blowing a tremendous amount of air through the horn as I was led to believe but a measured amount supported by the energy in my body, something I later discovered to compression, wind power.

I learned to play by feel. Every register, every combination of notes and shapes of phrases has it's feel. Knowing that feel facilitates execution.

I learned to be patient and not compare myself to others. We each have our own fortes and some aspects of trumpet playing come easier for some, but satisfaction comes often as you find yourself achieving new personal bests.

I walked in for the high notes and walked away a much stronger better trumpet player, like having had a high performance engine installed.

I also learned that conceptualizing alone is not enough to achieve a goal. Understanding the process to achieve an end result is the all important second part of the formula, methodology.

To this day I practice systematically, with a goal, and a smile on my face knowing that by taking the time each day to reacquaint myself with my friend, the trumpet, I will have a very gratifying day.

Hit It Hard And Wish It Well offers a comprehensive look into the teachings and methodology of Claude Gordon in an interesting and organized fashion. It's a book that can be re-visited many times while discovering new bits of information and new understandings with every read. Jeff Purtle was long time student of Claude Gordon and spend many years assisting him at brass conferences. He is one of very few that has been certified by Claude Gordon to teach his system and has dedicated many years collecting notes and videos for this book. Hit It Hard And With It Well is a culmination of his life's association with Claude and takes an already great approach for trumpet to an even higher level. Personally, on my first reading, the book served as a window into my past. Watching the videos of Claude's lectures took me back nearly fifty years to a time when the only thing that mattered to me was to be the best that I could be, and "hit it hard and wish it well" had only it's literal meaning. Thanks to Claude I learned to play with confidence and ended up doing a lot more "hitting" and a lot less "wishing". "Hit is hard and wish it well" came to mean "just play and don't worry about it", be fearless. Studying with Claude Gordon truly made a difference in my life.

As a testimony to the effectiveness of Jeff's book, I realized for the very first time just how much I had gained from Claude's teachings. I was also amazed as to how much I had forgotten, while managing to learn a few things that I didn't quiet understand way back in the day. I highly recommend Hit It Hard And Wish It Well as it offers clarity to basic information that has been clouded by confusion to so many, and it serves as a terrific guide for anyone interested in or already working on Systematic Approach.

In closing I shouldd add that ten years after having my world shaken by the movie Young Man With A Horn, I found myself sitting in an empty Las Vegas ballroom rehearsing with the Harry James Big Band. There he was, the man whose trumpet sound changed my life stood playing his horn just a few feet away from me every night through several tours for nearly a year and a half. When I asked how they got my name from out of the blue, Harry's manager said, "Claude Gordon recommended you."

Harry Kim
Vine Street Horns Founder
Los Angeles, California

Dan Cathy about this trumpet method book:

Jeff’s book meets a need for a wide range of audiences, not only the serious amateur player but it is an incredible review of the basic fundamentals even for the most accomplished trumpeter. Hit It Hard & Wish It Well contains the outstanding lifetime of teaching methods captured in this work. It is incredibly modernized with interactive elements of embedded video that it is an immersive experience. The diagrams and illustrations add so much insight into a much greater self-awareness of positioning of fingers, tongue, lips and much more.

This is a very efficient and effective way for me with a busy schedule to get a lot accomplished and get a lot of insights in a short period of time. It enables self-evaluation in a meaningful way without getting into a rut.

Jeff has captured such a breadth of information and knowledge that this will be a companion piece of a serious musician’s library. This is a living document that never grows old.

Dan Cathy
Chairman of Chick-fil-A